Summer Garden Scene at Hardwick Hall in Derbyshire

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Busy gardening today, so here's a quick one from the archives.

From the Wikipedia entry:

"Hardwick Hall in Doe Lea, Derbyshire is one of the most significant Elizabethan country houses in England. In common with its architect Robert Smythson's other works at both Longleat House and Wollaton Hall, Hardwick Hall is one of the earliest examples of the English interpretation of the Renaissance style of architecture, which came into fashion when it was no longer thought necessary to fortify one's home.

Hardwick Hall is situated on a hill top between Chesterfield and Mansfield, overlooking the Derbyshire countryside. The house was designed for Bess of Hardwick, Countess of Shrewsbury and ancestress of the Dukes of Devonshire, by Robert Smythson in the late 16th century and remained in that family until it was handed over to HM Treasury in lieu of Estate Duty in 1956. The Treasury transferred the house to the National Trust in 1959. As it was a secondary residence of the Dukes of Devonshire, whose main country house was nearby Chatsworth, it was little altered over the centuries and indeed, from the early 19th century, its antique atmosphere was consciously preserved. Hardwick's skyline features six rooftop pavilions with Bess of Hardwick's initials "ES" (Elizabeth Shrewsbury) carved into the balustrade.

Hardwick is a conspicuous statement of the wealth and power of Bess of Hardwick, who was the richest woman in England after Queen Elizabeth I herself. It was one of the first English houses where the great hall was built on an axis through the center of the house rather than at right angles to the entrance. Each of the three main stories is higher than the one below, and a grand, winding, stone staircase leads up to a suite of state rooms on the second floor, which includes one of the largest long galleries in any English house and a little-altered, tapestry-hung great chamber with a spectacular plaster frieze of hunting scenes. The windows are exceptionally large and numerous for the 16th century and were a powerful statement of wealth at a time when glass was a luxury: "Hardwick Hall, more glass than wall" the saying went. There is a large amount of fine tapestry and furniture from the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. A remarkable feature of the house is that much of the present furniture and other contents are listed in an inventory dating from 1601.

Hardwick Hall contains a large collection of embroideries, mostly dating from the late 16th century, many of which are listed in the 1601 inventory. Some of the needlework on display in the house incorporates Bess's monogram "ES", and may have been worked on by Bess herself.

Hardwick is open to the public. It has a fine garden, including herbaceous borders, a vegetable and herb garden an orchard. The extensive grounds also contain Hardwick Old Hall, a slightly earlier house which was used as guest and service accommodation after the new hall was built. The Old Hall is now a ruin. It is administered by English Heritage on behalf of the National Trust and is also open to the public.

Architectural historian Dan Cruickshank selected the Hall as one of his five choices for the 2006 BBC television documentary series Britain's Best Buildings"

Steve-h, T i s d a l e, twentyeight, and 33 other people added this photo to their favorites.

View 15 more comments

  1. XPAT in Poland [deleted] 68 months ago | reply

    Lovely set of shots.

  2. Rio-X 68 months ago | reply


  3. *♥* ṡhøώ ṃε υɾ ρïχ *♥* 68 months ago | reply

    Very nice......delightful capture

    ♫♪♫ ♥♥ L'amicizia fa la differenza the original group ♫♪♫ ♥♥

  4. daveduke 68 months ago | reply

    Beautiful series of shots, well captured.

  5. Mary Ann Potter [deleted] 68 months ago | reply

    These are all simply stunning! The colors are so well done!!!

  6. Skopelos ♫♪ 68 months ago | reply

    Seen and admired again...
    ♫♪♫ ♥♥ L'amicizia fa la differenza the original group ♫♪♫ ♥♥

  7. Don Iannone 68 months ago | reply

    Beautiful scene. Lovely photograph my friend. I hope you are having a wonderful weekend.

  8. mau_tweety 68 months ago | reply

    Beautiful picture!
    EXPLORE ! Congrats!-))))))

  9. PrairieHill 68 months ago | reply

    Lovely garden shots!

  10. ganobristol 68 months ago | reply

    Beautiful! I wish the garden was this lovely when I visited!

  11. tricycledteenager 68 months ago | reply

    Beautiful composition, Great result

  12. ►►►Felix Berndt - Photography◄◄◄(back) 68 months ago | reply

    Congrats On Explore!!!!!
    Have A Look Into The Stars =)

  13. Rozanne Hakala 68 months ago | reply

    Love, love this blue door! Fantastic comp and color!

  14. Birdman of El Paso 68 months ago | reply

    Very beautiful garden.

  15. artland 68 months ago | reply

    wonderfullllllllllllllllll !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  16. Gertraud-Magdalena 68 months ago | reply

    Very beautiful composition (*-*).

  17. biedk 68 months ago | reply

    What a nice corner of the earth!

  18. abjure 19 months ago | reply

    great capture x

  19. green voyage (far behind -- very sorry!) 9 months ago | reply

    A creatively composed view of a very lovely garden corner! The color harmonies are among my favorites, and the contextual information that you provide is very helpful, as well. Thank you for contributing this excellent image to the Parks and Gardens group! -- Best wishes, Rebecca

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